Easy Life Changes to Help You with Sustainable Living
In essence sustainable living is about using less energy, reusing and recycling. Less electricity, less heating and less water. Recycling and caring for the environment’s health which also means caring for your own health.
Some of the simple life changes mentioned in this post you will already know of but haven’t actioned. Some may be new to you. I know that some of the tips I’m sharing with you here, I actioned a long time ago. But then forgot about. So instead of starting all over again it was really about reintroducing them to my life.
‘Sustainable Living’ doesn’t mean you have to go without. I’m not suggesting using leaves for toilet paper. And hanging your teabags out to dry for reuse. You can live your life with all the simple pleasures and little luxuries you had before. You just need to be smart about it. In fact the more you save on the likes of electricity, heating and food (by eliminating food wastage) means the more you can spend on those luxuries you love. – like holidays (sustainable travel is achievable), wining and dining. And, if you so wish designer outfits. Because yes you can clothes shop and live more sustainable at the same time. Just think of sustainable fashion when you do so.
So without further ado here are my ‘20 Simple Life Changes to Help You with Sustainable Living‘:
- Change all the lightbulbs in your house/apartment to LED – they use less energy and last years and years longer than regular bulbs.
- Use rugs – they help keep rooms warm by providing another layer of insulation -meaning you aren’t using as much gas or burning as much oil or solid fuel.
- Use blinds and curtains where you can – they help keep the cold out and the warmth in. Further Reading: Sustainable Living – 5 Easy Ways To Lower Your Household Bills.
- Wash your clothes on an eco wash or 30 degrees (make sure your washing powder/tablets allow for it first) – washing at a lower temperature saves on energy. Your clothes will probably stay in better shape for longer too, so it’s a win win situation. On the flip side – always wash towels at 90 degrees.
- Hang clothes out to dry, whether it’s on a washing line or on a clothes horse – refraining from using the tumble dryer saves lots of energy but of course it’s not always possible especially in Irish climate and even more so if you have children. But you can still cut down usage by air drying first.
- Clothes shop smart – How many t-shirts do you really need? Buy well and not often or in the words of Vivienne Westwood “Buy Less, Choose Well, Make it Last”.
- Recycle, reuse, re-love – paper, plastic, glass and clothes – writing notes, children’s art, pretty bottle vases, charity and vintage shops.
- Use rechargeable batteries – for remotes, wireless items, children’s toys … the works!
- Turn off appliances on standby – if you aren’t using them why waste energy on them! Even that screen saver on your PC uses energy so set your PC to sleep mode instead. Further Reading: Simple Tips To Make Your Kitchen Energy Efficient.
- On that note if you are buying new appliances always purchase AAA or A+ appliances when you can, even if it means saving up a little more to buy them – these European Union energy labels relate to energy consumption and performance.
- Use the dishwasher, it uses less water than normal hand-washing. If you don’t have a dishwasher use a basin in the sink to wash your dishes, again it saves on water.
- Fill the kettle with only the amount of water you need – it saves on wasted energy and water.
- Take shorter showers, again they use less energy and water.
- Sort out your kitchen cupboards and know what you have in stock – buying too many groceries results in food wastage.
- Make use of lunch or dinner leftovers to create another meal, or pickle, bottle, dry or freeze what you don’t eat. Further Reading: Overripe Bananas? Make A Simple Banana Bread Recipe!
- Buy foods with less packaging and try buy local foods when you can – why buy that frozen fish when you can visit the local Fishmonger and buy fresh fish that hasn’t used all that energy being transported from afar and then frozen … do you really need to put that bunch of bananas into a bag before you put it in another bag?
- An on that note – Use reusable bags – keep one in your handbag, bike or car so it’s at hand when you need it.
- Grow your own food – start by growing your own herbs and then try vegetables and fruits. If you don’t have a garden use a window sill. Further Reading: Sustainable Living – My Vegepod Review – Grow Your Own Food
- Make friends with plants in your home, plants such as the Spider Plant, Boston Fern and Snake Plant have amazing capabilities of removing toxins in the air which means the air you breathe is cleaner and who doesn’t want to be friends with those kind of plants. Further Reading: Six House Plants that Clean the Air we Breathe in Our Home.
- Stand more, Sit Less – as a mother to two little wildlings this hasn’t been a problem for some time. However as a writer I do sit at my desk for some time – if you work from home – change it up, raise up your PC and stand at your computer more often, your body will thank you for it.
PIN: 20 Simple Life Changes to Help You with Sustainable Living
This article was first published on April 28th 2018 but has since been updated with ‘further reading’ article suggestions and links to help you on your sustainable journey.
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